Zurich North America today announced it has acquired 100 percent ownership of Sea Pine Technologies, a company specializing in innovative digital applications for the marketing of vehicle protection products. Zurich is a top provider of automotive Finance & Insurance (F&I) products and services in the United States.
This strategic move further expands Zurich’s automotive F&I capabilities and strengthens its innovative offerings to both auto dealers and car owners.
“Zurich continues to invest in the businesses and customer segments where it sees the best opportunities for excellence,” said Kathleen Savio, CEO of Zurich North America. “This acquisition builds on our strengths by delivering competitive capabilities for us in North America and accelerates our delivery of innovative and valued solutions to our customers.”
Founded in 2016 and based in Dallas, Texas, the company saw a macro shift in consumer purchasing behavior, where technology companies capable of developing on-demand, or real-time solutions in a user-friendly format were able to impact entire industries. Sea Pine recognized this shift as an opportunity to help auto dealers better serve their customers and sell more F&I products by leveraging its state-of-the-art technology to deliver a modern, comprehensive and efficient buying experience. Today, the company boasts several proprietary digital applications designed to enable dealers to meet the growing consumer demand for automotive F&I products, retain customers and increase their bottom lines.
“This acquisition exemplifies our customer-led spirit of innovation that Zurich continues to foster as we apply customer insights to develop new ways to augment our own capabilities with companies ready to deliver innovative products and services that meet our customers’ needs now and in the future,” said Anurag Batta, head of Strategy, Innovation and Business Development for Zurich North America.
For years, auto dealers have been searching for new ways to successfully sell F&I products beyond the traditional finance office. In 2018, Zurich began its relationship with Sea Pine collaborating on a pilot program with auto dealers testing Sea Pine’s digital application. According to Vince Santivasi, head of Direct Markets for Zurich North America, Sea Pine’s technology, combined with Zurich’s current F&I selling system and Zurich’s years of experience working with auto dealers, makes it possible to generate a significant increase in F&I product sales through additional channels. Santivasi now serves as president of the Sea Pine Board of Directors.
“We are extremely excited to become a part of Zurich North America, truly a first-class organization that puts an emphasis on being at the forefront of innovation and bringing real distinguishable value to its dealer network,” said Sea Pine Technologies CEO Andrew Rosen. “Motivated by a desire to offer relevant and productive technology solutions to an automotive industry that is rapidly changing, we are confident this move will have a meaningful impact on shaping its future.”
“Zurich is committed to helping auto dealers succeed and continuously improve their financial results,” said David Putz, head of Alternative Markets for Zurich North America. “Sea Pine’s technology further expands auto dealers’ ability to offer F&I products beyond the traditional point of sale. And, it provides car owners more educational resources and additional avenues to purchase vehicle protection products.”
The closing took place on Jan. 31, 2019.
Source: Company Press Release